Managing the skin around your stoma

Taking good care of your skinKeeping the skin around your stoma in good condition is the most important thing you can do to make life with a stoma pouch secure, comfortable and worry-free.

It is important to keep the skin around your stoma healthy. Contact between stoma output and skin causes skin irritation that then affects how well the adhesive on the appliance sticks to your body. This creates a vicious circle of more leakage and even more irritated skin.

The cycle of irritation

Leakage leads to contact between output from the stoma and the skin, which causes irritation. The problem is that once your skin becomes irritated, the adhesive on your pouch won’t attach properly, leading to more leaking of output. A vicious cycle of leakage and skin irritation can develop.

Keep your skin healthy

These six steps will help you keep your skin healthy:

  1. Make sure your skin is clean and completely dry before applying the adhesive

  2. Adjust the hole in the adhesive so that it exactly fits around your stoma

  3. Make sure that there is full contact between the adhesive and your skin – use a bit of light pressure with your hand

  4. Change your appliance as soon as you feel any discomfort or itching

  5. Check the size of the stoma regularly, especially if you have a hernia

  6. Make sure to use the stoma appliance and accessories most appropriate for your body profile

For more advice on the correct stoma care routines, follow the Apply-Check-Remove steps.

You may also wish to use our Brava Skin Cleanser which contains provitamin B5 to maintain healthy skin.

Use the right type of appliance

If you have concerns that your appliance is not providing a secure enough fit for your stoma and body shape, it is always advisable to check with your stoma care nurse first. There are many different types of stoma appliances available, so you might have to try a few to find the perfect product for you.

You can choose between different pouch sizes, application systems, colours, adhesive types and many other features to suit your lifestyle.

Use the right supporting products

Coloplast also offers a wide range of supporting products to make wearing a stoma pouch even more comfortable. These can help improve sealing, prevent skin problems and reduce smell. To find out which of our Brava supporting products are most suitable for your needs, try our Ostomy Self-assessment Tools.

You can see more detailed instructions on changing and draining a stoma pouch in our instructional videos.

Use the BodyCheck tool to find the right product for your body shape.


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